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Science and Ethics Agree: Coexistence Must Replace Killing Wolves (Part 2)

“Wolf” from goodfreephotos.com

By: Francisco J. Santiago-Ávila, PhD ( PAN WorksProject Coyote and The Rewilding Institute), Liv Baker, PhD ( PAN Works & Animal Behaviour and Conservation, Hunter College, CUNY), Kristin L. Stewart, JD, PhD ( PAN WorksAnthrozoology, Canisius College), and William S. Lynn, PhD ( PAN Works & Marsh Institute, Clark University)

The need for an ethical dialogue

To put it mildly, the ethical deliberations underlying current wolf (and most wildlife) management are inadequate, with short shrift given to the harms caused to all involved. Contrary to some Indigenous perspectives, Euro-North American federal and state agencies do not engage in the scientific and ethical exploration of who wolves are and how that should inform our relationships with them, despite overwhelming scientific evidence of wolf sentience, self-awareness, and culture among other morally relevant traits. The underlying, unexamined assumption within wildlife management is that any human claims (e.g., to eliminate any nuisance or risk, or to recreation) trump those of wild animals (e.g., to life, freedom from harm, social stability and health). In other words, wolves are treated as a combination of a natural resource (i.e., an object) to use as humans see fit, including as means of recreation, and a nuisance to eliminate, even preemptively. This exposes not only untrustworthy scientific expertise at play within public agencies, but also narrow, inaccurate and inconsistent views that hold an inordinate amount of power over our relationship with wildlife.

Science may provide valuable information, but there’s plenty of evidence that identity, values, and ethics drive not only policy but science itself. It is because of this that ethics and values need to be an explicit and central discourse within environmental and wildlife policy. Importantly, this does not mean that all ethical views are of equal value or equally legitimate. As with science itself, reason, evidence and experience also help distinguish better from worse ethical viewpoints. By dismissing a bona fide ethical conversation about wolf conservation and protection, the hierarchical, oppressive views and values of special interest groups with intimate ties to industry, wildlife agencies, managers and policy-makers are perpetuated.

Social science research suggests the dominating and exploitative values of US public agencies towards nonhuman animals are increasingly at odds with those of their constituents, which espouse increasingly considerate and compassionate worldviews towards animals and nature more broadly. When it comes to wolves, we endorse the traditional worldview of the Ojibwe (Chippewa or Anishinaabe) of the Great Lakes. The Ojibwe consider wolves as persons, worthy of compassion and justice despite not being human. The Ojibwe traditionally oppose wolf hunting, population caps or lethal management in conflict resolution, supporting instead the protection of wolves from harm, barring self-defense. This view of wolves as relatives and worthy of care and respect (a “due regard for others claims”) is a view shared by hundreds of Indigenous tribes globally. Such a view is also far more holistic, with a much more robust basis in not only situated ecological knowledge, but also contemporary ethics, philosophy and science:

Recently, ethologists have taken the trouble to watch wolves systematically, between mealtimes, and have found them to be, by human standards, paragons of steadiness and good conduct. They pair for life, they are faithful and affectionate spouses and parents, they show great loyalty to their pack and great courage and persistence in the face of difficulties, they carefully respect one another’s territories, keep their dens clean, and extremely seldom kill anything that they do not need for dinner. If they fight with another wolf, the encounter normally ends with a submission. They have an inhibition about killing the suppliant and about attacking females and cubs. They have also, like all social animals, a fairly elaborate etiquette, including subtly varied ceremonies of greeting and reassurance, by which friendship is strengthened, cooperation achieved, and the wheels of social life generally oiled. Our knowledge of this behavior is not based upon the romantic impressions of casual travelers; it rests on long and careful investigations by trained zoologists, backed up by miles of film, graphs, maps, population surveys, droppings analysis, and all the rest of the contemporary toolbag.

– Philosopher Mary Midgley (1995 p.24-25)

High intelligence, expressiveness, and unusual emotional depth enable wolves to maintain sophisticated social bonds, to work together as highly skilled cooperative hunters (Haber 1977). This same extraordinary sentience that is so integral to their basic biology also provides an ethical reason for not allowing them to be harvested and for considering remedial short-term control only in the rarest of circumstances, when there are solid, irrefutable biological and cost-benefit arguments and no other reasonable alternatives. To treat them otherwise is wrong.

– Wolf biologist Gordon C. Haber (1996)

Such situated, ecological, scientific, and ethical worldviews also promote the consideration of others who may be different in some ways, but who nevertheless share in the fundamental experiences of being vulnerable, being mortal, and thus able to be harmed in similar ways. In such worldviews, we find value in one’s own life alongside the lives of kith and kin. Under such worldviews doing right by wolves, Indigenous peoples, domesticated animals and their associated humans, and the broad public would entail: (1) protecting wolves from lethal management and harm, especially from recreational killing but also in conflict management, and (2) a focus on proven non-lethal methods to resolve conflicts barring clear, immediate threat to life (which is already allowed under full protections).

However, the views – explicitly and implicitly – championed by established wildlife management (the practice and precedent of which fall within the confines of traditional conservation) value and consider those who possess an ‘enshrined quality’, like being human as opposed to nonhuman, and dismiss what is shared. Scholarly work has found this hierarchical thinking not limited to the human-animal divide, and intimately tied to other worldviews that place a higher value on certain human qualities, such as whiteness, maleness, heteronormativity, ableness, rationality, and carnism, among others. Humans who don’t share in those qualities have to some extent been dismissed from consideration; ‘delisted’ rather than protected, despite their contributions to society and disproportional vulnerability to harm given those same prejudices. It is no different with wolves: they value their lives, they contribute greatly to a healthy environment, to their society, and are extremely vulnerable to harm.

Established wildlife management, in its dismissal of wolves and claims made on their behalf, in conjunction with the elevation of claims by hunting and ranching communities, is thereby linked to other prejudicial views acting within human society, such as racism, sexism, homophobia and authoritarianism. Promoting these dominating views within wolf policy can prejudice people against wolves and nature more generally, as well as against other humans. Consistent with such prejudice towards differences, there is a shocking lack of human diversity in wildlife management and policy, with the profession being composed mostly of white males, and ethnically-similar resource boards with ties to hunters and ranchers. For wolves as well as humans, this is a social justice issue.

From Wildlife “management” to coexistence
Wolf policy is but one issue being affected by this dismissal of science and ethical deliberation. Agency capture by narrow, unsupported and undemocratic interests and worldviews is rampant within broader wildlife management. The same agency capture and dismissal of science and ethics is at play in state wildlife killing contests, BLM round-ups of wild mustangs, among other controversies. How then should we begin to move towards coexistence, which entails a caring and respectful relationship towards wildlife?

There is a need to democratize wildlife policy through the equitable participation of currently underrepresented world views at all policy levels. From the multiple lawsuits by Native American tribes and wildlife advocacy organizations, to the magnitude of comments received against reducing protections for wolves, it is clear that the public is already demanding a change, but being shut out from within. The Trump administration’s delisting proposal did not include consultation with Native American tribes, in clear violation of the law, and the Biden Administration has followed this lead. Hundreds of Tribal Nations from North America and globally have already petitioned for reinstating wolf protections to the Biden Administration and to Interior Sec. Haaland and are being ignored at best. Their worldviews and situated ecological knowledge were dismissed right along with wolf interests.

Simultaneously, in order to promote common ground and analyze how values translate to policy, we suggest that public agencies focus on creating official spaces for ethical deliberation and analysis within the policy process. Moreover, such ethical deliberation demands better ethical education and training for decision-makers, managers and technicians in all branches of government. Such initiatives would open spaces for a productive exchange of worldviews, clarification of values, mutual understanding, and could rebuild the ethics-science relationship that allows us to triangulate on policies that equitably consider our entire community of life. There is precedent for this type of institutionalized ethics-based policy dialogue, which will certainly promote the federal National Environmental Policy Act’s (NEPA) goals of improving decision-making and facilitating broad public participation. This process could be supplemented with ethics reviews or briefs created with the assistance of trained experts that can provide a pluralist ethical analysis of the process and resulting policy alternatives, similar to current scientific review.

And yet, as much as it is important to get equitable representation and deliberation among humans in wildlife commissions and policy bodies, it is equally important to promote an ethic of care and justice towards nature front and center. To begin heading in that direction, there is a stark need to explore who other animals are, what they want, and our responsibilities towards them. Wolves, as many other animals, value their lives, seek to avoid harm, can experience a range of emotions, including feelings of joy. Wolves are self-aware, with complex social relationships. These are scientific facts that carry serious ethical implications for their protection and management. For us, this argues for the equitable consideration of their claims alongside humans, rather than their exploitation for our convenience or pleasure. This has indeed been the position promoted by the Ojibwe for wolves, and seems to us the strongest position scientifically and ethically.

Of course, the aforementioned are long-term, general proposals. But, what about the urgency for wolves? The public has already marked their support for wolf protection, and provided stronger-evidenced and more compassionate alternatives. For example, the US could protect the wolf permanently through species-specific federal or state legislation, as done nationally for the Bald Eagle and as promoted by many Indigenous Tribes through their drafted Wolf Treaty.

Wolves value their own lives, and have much more urgent claims for protection (to life, to freedom from harm) than humans have for killing them (recreation, nuisance, hatred, biased perception of effectiveness). Yet, governments are choosing policies that oppress and devalue wolves, rather than choosing to promote their consideration, care and respect that attend to what we both share and to relevant differences. We need to establish an ethical dialogue that helps us clarify what values and attitudes our policies promote. And we should always remember that our social nature and empathy are not restricted to who is like us, be it in skin color, ability, sex, gender, or species. Our communities, our wonder, care and respect have never been limited to humans, and it is in no small part because of wolves. This simple, intuitive recognition can be extremely powerful when employed politically, as we hope it will: by protecting wolves we are protecting our entire mixed-community of life.

This article may be redistributed under CC BY-ND 4.0.

New Article on “Conservation after Sovereignty”

PAN Works is delighted to announce that Francisco Santiago-Ávila (PAN Works, Project Coyote & The Rewilding Institute) and our colleague Pablo Castello (Cambridge Centre for Animal Rights Law) recently published “Conservation after Sovereignty: Deconstructing Australian Policies against Horses with a Plea and Proposal” in the journal Hypatia.

From the Abstract:

Conservation scholarship and policies are concerned with the viability of idealized ecological communities constructed using human metrics. We argue that the discipline of conservation assumes an epistemology and ethics of human sovereignty/dominion over animals that leads to violent actions against animals. We substantiate our argument by deconstructing a case study. In the context of recent bushfires in Australia, we examine recent legislation passed by the parliament of New South Wales (NSW), policy documents, and academic articles by conservationists that support breaking communities of horses and/or killing 4,000 horses in Kosciuszko National Park (KNP), NSW. Theoretically framing our deconstruction against human sovereignty over animals and anthropocentrism, we affirm an intersectional, ecofeminist approach that values animals as relational and vulnerable agents. We uncover first the epistemic violence of categorizing horses as “pests,” and the anthropocentric nature of recently passed legislation in NSW. We analyze next the deficient ethics of NSW’s government, and the argument that killing animals is justifiable when they suffer from starvation and dehydration. We close with a realistic proposal that does not involve breaking horses’ communities and/or killing horses, and a plea to the government of NSW and conservationists not to harm any horses in KNP.

Readers may also enjoy these two related articles on brumbies.

Coughlin, Simon, and Adam Cardilini. 2022. “Introduced Species Are Animals Too: Why the Debate Over Compassionate Conservation is Worth Having.” The Conversation. https://theconversation.com/introduced-species-are-animals-too-why-the-debate-over-compassionate-conservation-is-worth-having-163987.

Lynn, William S. 1998. “Contested Moralities: Animals and Moral Value in the Dear/symanski Debate.” Ethics, Place and Environment 1 (2): 223–42. https://doi.org/10.1080/1366879X.1998.11644229

Science and Ethics Agree: Coexistence Must Replace Killing Wolves (Part 1)

USFWS. 2001. Mexican Wolf (by Jim Clark)

By: Francisco J. Santiago-Ávila, PhD (PAN Works & Project Coyote), Liv Baker, PhD (PAN Works & Animal Behaviour and Conservation, Hunter College, CUNY), Kristin L. Stewart, JD, PhD (PAN Works & Anthrozoology, Canisius College), and William S. Lynn, PhD (PAN Works & Marsh Institute, Clark University)

 

Brown people, Native people in this country have a history of being ‘delisted’.

Marvin Defoe, Tribal Historic Preservation Officer
Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa

Gray wolves in the US are once again under fierce attack. After 45 years of protection under the Endangered Species Act and despite scientifically and ethically-driven protests, the USFWS delisted the gray wolf from the federal list of Endangered and Threatened Species on November 3, 2020, with the ruling taking effect on January 4, 2021. Despite a recent February 10, 2022 court decision to relist many wolves, namely those outside the Northern Rocky Mountains (delisted by Congressional budget rider), gray wolves in the NRM continue to be exposed to the same widespread, indiscriminate, and state-sponsored killing policies that nearly exterminated them from the contiguous US in the last century. Idaho plans to reduce its wolf population by 90%, with the state hiring contractors to kill wolves using night-vision goggles, ATVs, leg-hold snares, and shooting from helicopters. Wolf pups on private land are also fair game. In Montana the plan is to kill up to 85% of wolves. Hunters may now kill an unlimited number of wolves day or night, use bait, and be paid a bounty by the state. While wolves were delisted, Wisconsin intended to hold another wolf hunting season of at least 130 wolves in November, 2021 despite holding one 9 months prior that led to the legal killing of 218 wolves (overshooting the official quota by nearly 83%) and the poaching of close to 100 more, but a state judge enjoined the hunt prior to the recent relisting. South Dakota allows wolf killing year-round (including trapping) when wolves are delisted, despite not even having a resident pack.

These policies are crafted and enforced by state wildlife agencies and natural resource boards, which are largely supported and influenced by hunter and rancher lobbies. Hunter and ranching groups, along with wildlife managers, are important constituencies in wolf policy decisions. State wildlife officials generally have specialized knowledge and expertise in environmental sciences and are charged with managing natural resources, including wolves. There exists, however, an inherent conflict of interest as state wildlife agencies are funded by hunting and angling license fees authorized through federal statutes. The Pittman-Robertson Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act of 1937, for example, levies a tax on sporting arms and ammunition and apportions it to states. Hunters are by definition interested in killing; however, many express a depth of admiration for wildlife, claim they enjoy deep family connection from hunting, and are aware that their activities support state conservation efforts (through licensing fees). And ranchers are in the business of raising domesticated animals for food, so predatory wildlife that may harass or kill those animals is inevitably a source of stress and conflict. Most ranchers perceive wolves as competitors, and contend that wolves are a threat to their livelihoods. Whether for financial reasons or care for their animals, it makes sense that ranchers want to remove all threats, including getting rid of wolves. In any case, for those enmeshed in what they perceive to be wolf-human conflicts, it is unsurprising that such relationships are conceived as an us-or-them problem.

Consider the claims of hunters and ranchers. A segment of these groups says the wolf population is “out of control,” and that their predation on domesticated animals threatens ranchers’ livelihoods. Some hunters voice concerns over the effect of wolves on populations of deer, elk and moose, while other hunters claim populations of this ‘wolf resource’ are healthy enough to allow killing for recreation. Wildlife managers charged with responding to such claims insist they need to allow for institutionally sanctioned wolf-killing because that will increase tolerance for the species, reduce unsanctioned killing of wolves and conflicts, and garner political support for wolf conservation from said groups. But wildlife officials do not make such decisions in a vacuum; indeed, hunters and ranchers wield considerable influence on undemocratic state wildlife commissions (where they are disproportionately represented), state legislatures and thus on agency policy, which of course influences wildlife management decisions and actions. And as surely as hunting and ranching lobbies make their preferences heard at the policy roundtable, just as sure is the fact that other voices with less influence and power have been rendered silent.

They may be the most influential stakeholders, but hunters, ranchers, and wildlife managers are certainly not the only ones invested in wolf policy matters. Others have just as much or more at stake in this conversation and its outcomes. Those with literally no voice have the most at stake—the wolves themselves. Also indigenous peoples, wildlife and environmental advocates, academicians and scientists, as well as the broad public, who entrusts our federal and state governments with public trust responsibilities, all are deeply invested in the fate of wolves.

It is not just that the stakeholders with the loudest voices drown out or silence the others; in fact, the claims made by the hunters, ranchers, and wildlife managers who currently control wolf policies are neither scientifically supported nor ethically justified.

Experts who study the role that science and ethics can play in wolf-human relationships and policy are clear that returning to widespread, state-sponsored killing policies—those that nearly exterminated wolves from the contiguous US in the last century—are not justified. Such policies are clear dismissals of the relevant scientific evidence and moral considerations that support the continued protection of wolves. Rather than return to past policies that perpetuate the killing and vilification of wolves, we have an opportunity to enact more democratic, scientifically sound, and ethically robust public policies for managing wolf-human relationships. Failure to do so will undoubtedly harm not only wolves and the stability of wolf society, but with it also lead to harms to domesticated animals, their associated humans, relationships with Indigenous groups, and the public’s trust in federal and state wildlife policy.

Science says killing wolves harms all

The decision to remove protections for wolves is a blatant dismissal of science. Research on wolves reveals them as feeling, thinking, socially complex individuals who, akin to ourselves, want to know about their world, and value their lives and families. We call a wolf family a pack and each wolf plays a critical role in the pack, allowing for the breeding and rearing of pups, cooperative hunting and territory defense. As an apex predator, the internal regulation of their populations depends on available resources and, in great part, on the social stability of their families and the wider community of other wolf packs. Wolves do not require any type of lethal management to achieve natural densities. On the contrary, lethal management disrupts the behavior and social structure of wolf families, causing more harms to all on the landscape, as we explain below. While the scientific knowledge that substantiates the complex internal and social lives of wolves is indisputable, public policies about wolves and relevant management plans routinely dismiss this scientific knowledge. Instead, the focus is on the science of how wolves may impact (some) humans and the interests of (some) humans in controlling and exploiting them.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/0l1I6wKPuSc

As apex predators, wolves do exert a regulating influence on wild ungulate populations through direct (killing) and indirect effects, such as risk assessment by prey. But, after 40 years of recovery efforts there is no evidence to suggest that increasing wolf populations are imperiling wild ungulate populations, and predator removal has been shown to have negligible effects on wild prey populations. Yet, there is substantial evidence to show that wolves are having positive ecosystem effects as they expand their distribution, and they may even be mitigating harm and economic loss by keeping wild ungulates away from roads, resulting in fewer vehicle collisions.

Contrary to the claims of some federal and state wildlife managers that reducing protections is necessary for political support and increased tolerance, multiple peer-reviewed studies – from focus groups and surveys, to wolf monitoring data – provide robust evidence that reducing protections for wolves does not “increase tolerance” for wolves. On the contrary, reducing protections is associated with more intolerant attitudes and behaviors towards wolves by hunters and ranchers. Monitoring data from gray and Mexican wolves also point to substantially increased rates of concealed and previously unmeasured poaching of wolves during periods of reduced federal and state protections. This is true, even in the absence of state-sponsored wolf hunts (i.e., by only allowing managers to respond lethally to conflicts). Poaching is, in fact, the largest source of wolf mortality in the US and consistently underreported. Consequently, wolf populations are systematically and routinely overestimated. Reducing protections for wolves – even marginally – sends a policy signal that further devalues wolves in the eyes of people who may already possess negative perceptions of them, resulting in increased rates of both legal and illegal killing.

As for wolf predation on domesticated ungulates, such predation accounts for less than 1% of domesticated ungulate deaths, which is much lower than any non-predator cause of death, such as disease, weather, or calving problems. And yet, some ranchers claim they suffer from chronic conflicts with wolves, which they claim necessitates their killing. The problem with lethal intervention is that, while reactive wolf killing may benefit from the perception of effectiveness, the evidence for the actual effectiveness of lethal methods is mixed at best, and lethal methods may actually increase conflicts. For example, in the Great Lakes, studies suggest that sanctioning restricted, targeted wolf killing by government agents results in an increasing rate of conflicts, and therefore more dead domestic animals and wolves, over time relative to periods of full protection. There are two suggested, interdependent reasons for this effect: (1) lower protections may increase negative attitudes, perceived conflicts and complaints; and (2) killing wolves disrupts their social cohesion and breaks up their family units (packs), complicating their cooperative hunting and incentivizing wolves to select domesticated prey, despite wolves’ clear preference for wild prey species.

In addition, no method of indiscriminate killing of wolves – e.g., hunting, trapping, hounding, or killing pups in the den – has been proven effective at reducing wolf-human conflicts. All this evidence points to misguided, ill-founded policies, which cause short- and long-term harms to a wide community of people, animals and nature.

In stark contrast to problematic lethal methods stand scientifically-proven, functionally-effective nonlethal methods of preventing conflicts with wolves. These include fladry (small strips of cloth on a wire), an array of visual and sound deterrents, as well as guardian animals such as livestock guarding dogs – although the use of dogs is not without its problems when considering their protection and treatment. The effectiveness of fladry and guardian dogs has been rigorously tested and shown successful in mitigating wolf-predation in Michigan. Other auditory and visual deterrents (e.g., scare boxes, foxlights) have proven effective at reducing conflicts out West in states, such as Idaho, where cows and sheep are grazed on public lands. Contrary to wolf-killing, these non-lethal interventions do not disrupt pack structure, so they do not increase the risk of wolf predation on adjacent properties, as lethal methods can do.

If wolf killing causes such harms to wolves and domesticated animals alike, and does not serve a conservation purpose such as reducing wolf killing or increasing tolerance, why is it still promoted in legislatures and agencies alike? This is not just a scientific failure. Underlying the claims of some hunters, ranchers and wildlife managers is an established, dominating view of wolves as a natural resource to be exploited given any human claim, as long as there is lip service to it being done sustainably. This view has been the ‘traditional conservation’ position promoted by Euro-North American wildlife agencies since their inception: “to understand, appreciate, and wisely use fish and wildlife resources” and do so “for the continuing benefit of the American people” (USFWS, Objectives).

Part 2 of this essay, “The Need for Ethical Dialogue” will appear next week. There we map out the fundamental role of values and ethics in US wildlife policy, and how we can begin to transition from the oppression of traditional conservation to worldviews grounded in care, respect and coexistence

This article may be redistributed under CC BY-ND 4.0.

People•Animals•Nature

Exploring Conservation Conflicts in Medium is now People•Animals•Nature (PAN)!

In February of 2019, Lysanne Snijders (Behavioral Ecology, Wageningen University) and Tanja Straka (Human Dimensions, Technische Universität Berlin) had a brilliant idea. They created an editorial column on Medium to explore the intersections of ethics and human-wildlife interaction. Their’s was an open and welcoming approach as Lysanne and Tanja sought to do justice to the diversity of valuable perspectives in conservation conflicts by exploring their ecological, human dimensions and ethical points of view.

This was a bold idea and one not restricted to human-wildlife conflict in exotic places Rather they sought to look at the realities of ongoing contact between human and nonhuman animals, and the possibilities of coexistence in urban to wild places across the globe.

While the “human dimensions of wildlife” research has grown over the decades, not all of it takes as seriously as it should the ethics, morals and values that drive conflicts in human-animal relations and conservation. Consequently, people to people conflicts over wildlife arise between different groups of human beings. The dispute over the killing of Cecil the lion between the general public, conservationists and trophy hunters is one example. Or the conflict may involve interactions between wild and/or domesticated animals themselves. Coyotes killing companion animals in North American suburbs is another example. Whatever the precise configuration this might take, avoiding, mitigating and resolving such conflicts are necessary for people, animals and nature to thrive in coexistence.

And so ‘Exploring Conservation Conflicts’ was born.

February 2019 also marked the beginnings of the global pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Ironically, Covid-19 was and remains an example of a zoonotic disease underscoring humanity’s failures of coexistence. Predictably, zoonotic disease outbreaks, including the devastating avian flu, commonly arise within the nexus of the destruction of wild lands, a burgeoning bush-meat trade, the continued existence of wet markets, and industrialized animal agriculture. These proximate causes are symptoms of worldviews that instrumentalize and deny adequate moral value to the more-than-human world.

About a year after founding Exploring Conservation Conflicts, Lysanne and Tanja joined with PAN Works – an ethics think tank dedicated to the well-being of animals (www.panworks.io). Ethics think tanks are key organizations for envisioning how we ought to live and translating that into specific ideas, best practices and policy proposals for the community at large. While there are a plethora of think tanks focusing on social issues, and a few for the environment and sustainability, there are almost none for animals either domesticated or wild. Inspired in large part by the work of Mary Midgley, PAN Works is a global platform investigating “why animals matter” and what that means for the “mixed community” of people, animals and nature.

Our mutual commitment to exploring the normative aspects of how humans related to wild and domesticated animls made this a natural collaboration. So as of today, Exploring Conservation Conflicts is starting a new chapter as People•Animals•Nature (PAN), the editorial column of PAN Works.

We intend to continue the fine work started by Lysanne and Tanja, and hope that you’ll continue to follow their individual work as well as this column. They will continue to write and moderate editorial columns to the benefit of us all. We will also introduce new regular and guest columnists.

In addition, we are expanding the mission of PAN to complement discussions of particular cases and conflicts with broader consideration to innovative ideas and practices. Animal wellbeing, one health ethics, compassionate conservation, multispecies justice, and rewilding are a few of these. We also intend to enliven our column with articles, images and interpretations from creatives including fiction, poetry and the digital arts.

We hope you’ll find the new content stimulating to your thinking and walk in the world, and we look forward to being in dialogue with you.

So head on over to panworks.medium.com and sign up to follow.

Cheers, Bill Lynn

Founder, PAN Works